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Major Marine Tours Orders Scania Quad V8 Powered High-Speed Catamarans 

Scania was selected by Major Marine Tours in Seward, Alaska to power its latest whale watching vessels. The 87-foot Spirit of Matushka, delivered in the Spring of 2021 and its sister ship Skana, launched this month, were constructed by All American Marine, a company based in Bellingham, Washington. The vessels are powered by four DI16 082M 800 hp engines supplied by Cascade Engine Center and propelled by Hamilton 422 Water Jets. The custom-built catamarans are capable of a top speed of 32 knots with a full capacity of 150 passengers and full fuel, with a lighter load they can reach 36 knots. The identical ships are the fastest, most fuel-efficient vessels in the Major Marine Tours fleet. 

The new catamarans were specially designed to give passengers the best viewing experience possible. The bow is built with stadium-style standing areas for optimum wildlife viewing, a first for Alaskan whale watching vessels. Additionally, the third deck has unobstructed 360-degree views and is partially enclosed to block the wind while still enjoying the outdoor seating. The vessels also have ample outside viewing space on the first deck, which is also a fully wrap-around wheelchair accessible deck. The semi-displacement catamaran hull for these vessels were developed by Teknicraft Design in Aukland, New Zealand. The design integrates the signature Teknicraft symmetrical and asymmetrical combined hull shape, bow wave piercer and innovative hydrofoil system.


“Knowing that fuel efficiency and speed were the primary driving factors behind the design and outfitting of the Spirit of Matushka and Skana, we knew that our engines would be the perfect solution,” said David Hughes, sales manager – marine products, Scania USA. “Our DI16 engines not only provided the performance and efficiency Major Marine required, but also were a quieter alternative, perfect for not disturbing the wildlife that passengers are coming to see.”

Quad V8 Powered Catamaran,Spirit of Matushka


“All American Marine worked with us to refine our goals, build two proven vessels that met those goals, and then delivered,” said Colby Lawrence, Major Marine Tours Vice President. “In fact, despite building two boats during the midst of a global pandemic they delivered both boats on time and on budget. These new vessels with their Teknicraft design and the Scania engines give us the capacity, comfort, fuel economy and speed that are revolutionizing the fleet for Major Marine Tours.”


Built on a Compacted Graphite Iron (CGI) engine block and employing a simple wastegate turbocharger, the quad Scania DI16-liter engines deliver top-of-class performance without the need for additional turbos or superchargers. The resulting lighter weight, combined with Scania’s proprietary Engine Management System (EMS) and common rail extra high-pressure injection system (XPI), optimizes fuel delivery enabling impressive torque, lower noise and exceptional fuel efficiency.